The Pico Mountain Observatory is located at 2225 m above sea level, close to the summit of the Pico Mountain in the Pico island in the Azores. The unique location allows to measure free tropospheric air masses originating often from North America and crossing the North Atlantic.
CARES (Carbonaceous Aerosol and Radiative Effects Study - 2010) and ClearfLo (Clear Air for London - 2012) were two field campaigns aimed at studying aerosol properties in the atmosphere. We collected aerosols on several filters during both campaigns and our role in this project is that of analyzing these particles at the electron microscope to study their morphological properties and their mixing. We study aerosol properties by looking at their shape, their semi-quantitative elemental composition and the mixing of different particles types (e.g. dust with soot). We also focus our attention on carbonaceous aggregates (soot) and study their atmospheric processing and aging by estimating the coating on these aggregates by other substances, as well as by calculating their fractal-like properties. Under this project we will also participate in chamber experiments where we will attempt to reproduce different aerosol mixtures and morphologies that might mimic atmospheric conditions. This study will provide similar information to those studied during wildfires sampling as discussed in China et a. (2013).
(Funded by NSF)
The aim of this project is to measure the "ability" (efficiency) of different aerosol types and sizes to act as ice nucleators in the contact mode. One of our group's main goals in the project is to develop an acoustic levitation technique to allow for freezing single droplets in contactless conditions. A second principal goal is to investigate these nucleation processes with the use of optical techniques.
(Funded by NSF)
The objective of this project is to develop a large turbulent multiphase (water in the vapor, liquid and solid phase) reaction chamber to study clouds and aerosol interactions in a controlled turbulent environment. (in the picture on the side the chamber installation in March 2014)
See new video about the chamber here
(Initially funded by the Excellence Research Fund - Seed Fund Program at MTU, currently funded by NSF)
The project aims at developing a multiwavelength photoacoustic and nephelometer spectrometer to measure aerosol optical properties integrating a phtoacoustic/nephelometer cell with our supercontinuum laser.
(Originally funded by NASA, currently unfunded but still ongoing)